St. Charles Herald-Guide

Louisiana Wildlife & Fisheries News Briefs

Special to the Herald-Guide - May 9, 2007

The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission officially proclaimed June 9 and 10 "No License Required" fishing days for Louisiana citizens and visitors during May 3 meeting proceedings.

The promotional fishing dates are provided for novices and non-anglers as an opportunity to experience the sport of fishing.

The program provides the public with an open access fishing opportunity in an effort to attract more people into the ranks of licensed fishermen. Those license fees support LDWF's conservation efforts including habitat management.   
"No License Required" fishing weekend is a part of the Seventh Annual National Fishing and Boating Week that runs from June 2 to June 10.  The event was created to help reverse the trend of declining participation in outdoor activities across America.

"LDWF is encouraging licensed recreational fishermen to introduce someone to fishing on the weekend of June 9 to10," said John Sturgis, LDWF educationmanager.

"It's an activity anyone of any age can enjoy, even without a boat.

“Louisiana offers some of the best bank and pier fishing opportunities in the south."

May 19 through 25 is safe boating week

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) is pleased to announce that Governor Kathleen Blanco has proclaimed May 19 to 25 as Safe Boating Week in Louisiana. 

The announcement came during the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission May meeting. 

In Louisiana and across the nation, May 19 to 25 will be recognized as safe boating week to remind boaters to practice safe and responsible boating by always wearing a life jacket and remaining alert on the water.

Statistics show that nearly 70 percent of the boating fatalities in Louisiana are due to drowning and nearly 80 percent of those victims were not wearing lifejackets.

"Maintaining a safe and enjoyable atmosphere on our state waterways is a major goal of the Enforcement Division," said LDWF's Colonel Winton Vidrine.

Enforcement agents across the state will be highlighting safe boating activities as  the summer boating season begins. The Louisiana Wildlife Agent's Association has also partnered with LDWF to hand out free t-shirts to kids wearing life jackets when agents make random safety inspections on the water.

The t-shirts are sponsored by businesses across the state and are inscribed with the slogan: "I Got Caught Wearing My Life Jacket."

LDWF encourages all boaters to enroll in a boating education course. Boating knowledge and skills are important in reducing human error and improving judgment.

Those completing the course are more aware of the risks involved during time spent on the water and understand the need for precautionary measures that protect themselves, their friends, family and others.

For more information on safe boating practices, regulations, or boating education courses, please visit LDWF's Web site at